On today’s AgriTalk, Hunter Carpenter, Director of Public Policy for the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA), joined Chip Flory to discuss how the increase in prevent plant acres directly impacts ag retailers.
“Our hearts go out to farmers. It has been a tough year. It continues to be a tough year. And I would first like to say that ARA is very appreciative and supportive of congressional efforts to help farmers recover,” Carpenter says. “That said, it’s also going to be a really tough year for ag retailers across the country.”
Carpenter references the increase in likely acres claimed as prevented planting, and how that will lead to hardships for ag retailers, other businesses that serve farmers, and all rural businesses. One specific example for ag retailers is treated seed, which if left unplanted can’t be carried over for future seasons and has no value.
ARA recently sent a letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue asking for a delay in the prevent plant deadlines. As ARA President Daren Coppock said in the letter, Our members will always have the farmers' best interest at heart because if farmers don't succeed, retailers don't succeed.”
And the association is hoping to work for possible changes this year and adjustments for coming years.
“Let's take Indiana for example,” Carpenter says. “Indiana geographically has three distinct planting seasons, but they have the same prevent plant date for the entire state. And that to us doesn't make a whole lot of sense.”
Carpenter says ag retailers aren’t alone as the implications of an unplanted crop will affect the entire supply chain. Related, read “Rural Economy Battling Extreme Headwinds”
Listen to the full interview below: